Filed under: ethics, providence, teshuva, The God knows whats going on, troubles and complications, why "bad things" happen
From this parsha we can learn many lessons. We are given to see that the ways of Hashem in fulfilling his will are hidden from our pitiful level of Consciousness. We also learn some of the mechanisms involving tikun (fixing of the world) and teshuva (repentance). We also see how Hashem returns sparks of light to their source in harmony.
We know that everything that happens in the world is only directed ultimately by the will of Hashem but much of this most people will never understand. As His way are not our ways and His thoughts are not as our thoughts. We certainly can not comprehend the awsome nature of the intricate workings with in the creation. One would have never thought that Yosef who was sold as a slave would end up running all of Egypt. But everything happens for a reason and that is so to eventually bring our Mashiach and redemption. This will bring the world to perfect harmony. To accomplish this everything must be brought and set in its rightful place of order. To do this we have the process called tikun. We are in this world to make tikun as individuals but also to work on the tikun of our nation of Yisrael and the world as a whole. But this job is not left for us to work alone, but that Hashem through his providence is also making tikun in this world of His.
From the parsha we can get some instruction on how to understand and go about in this process of elevation called teshuva. If a person will do their part the Holy one Blessed is His name will do a corresponding action. As we know a action below is followed by a action above. From this process of action and reaction Hashem gives us many times what we need to do to bring our lives and all else back to proper order. He does this by creating a action in this world that can take many forms, but one most common as we see involved in the story of Yosef’s life is chastisement. The troubles and complications that come to make difficulties in our lives. As we see regarding Yosefs brothers when they came to Egypt. We find Yosef acting harshly towards them accusing them of being spies and thieves. This persecution leads them to realize their faults saying “Hashem has found the inequity of His servents” “We are guilty concerning our brother since we saw the anguish of his soul, and he called to us, but we would not hear. Becouse of this all this has come upon us” We see from these statements that the chastisement brought on Yosef’s brothers by him gets his brothers to feel sorrow for their deed and suffer for it, worry about it, feel shame, humility and ultimately realize that it was not just a coincidence or a random thing of nature that all the trouble befell them, but that these troubles were directed by Hashem becouse of their own deeds (with Yosef). And not only were these things brought on by Hashem but they were a measure for measure response to their own actions. This helps to explain why Benyamin was given 5 times more food then his other brothers as it was becouse of jealousy that the brothers brought their father a evil report concerning Yosef. Now Hashem through Yosef and Benyamin is giving them the opportunity to be in a similar situation but this time not become jealous. By this they partially heal the damage done to their souls.
All the steps mentioned above above from feeling sorry about their improper actions to realizing Hashem’s hand in all that happens are part of the process of teshuva as described in the book “Gates of Teshuva” and many other Holy works. Working with this process one can then by tesuva remove impurity and disorder and accordingly gain in purity and ultimately reach the state that is called Holiness where he has visions, dreams of prophesy and can understand them as they reach ruach ha Kodesh.
In the Beginning of our parsha Yosef tells pharoe what Hashem has told him pharoe’s dream means. In the same way that only Hashem knows the true meaning of a dream, we can see that only Hashem knows fully how the creation operates. It is for us to look around so to see the Holy ones signs and symbols that will direct us to his path of truth so that we will ultimately see the redemption with the building of the Holy Temple with the Mashiach in Mercy quickly in our days.